Razz poker is a Seven Card Stud poker variant, which has become a very popular poker game at online poker rooms as well as live tournaments. Razz became a big hit thanks to its debut in in the 1971 WSOP , and is the only poker game that has appeared in every single WSOP since then. Razz, or more specifically Seven Card Stud, is an easy game to learn, but this does not mean that it is easy to play, let alone win at. It is a type of draw card game; however instead of getting the cards upfront, players receive the cards as the game progresses. It can be said that it is a combination of draw card and community card methods, but instead of having 2 personal and 5 community cards, each player gets the 7 cards in order to create their hand.
Razz Poker HistoryThe history of Razz poker is pretty much the history of Seven Card Stud. No one really knows when Razz was first invented. When the 52 card deck was invented in the 1900’s, that is when Seven Card Stud appeared, and many believe that soon after Razz was created. The only popular accounts of Razz ever being played was when it was first introduced as an event during the 1971 WSOP. It seemed to have struck a nerve, since it became the only poker game to be an event during the WSOP ever since it was first played in 1971. Razz is considered a specialty poker game, and can most of the time be found in online poker rooms.
How to Play Razz PokerLearning to play Razz is like learning to play Seven Card Stud Lowball. Lowball means that instead of following the normal hand rankings where the highest hand wins, it is where the lowest hand will win. The way Razz is played is through various betting and “draw” rounds. The first step is when the dealer hands out a total of 3 cards to each player. Two of the cards are dealt face-down, which are called hole cards; the third card is dealt facing up. The round of betting begins by comparing the card that is facing up; whoever has the highest card rank will be the first to bet. After each round of betting, there is a “draw” round. It isn’t a draw round in the conventional way where players exchange the cards in their hand for new cards. Instead, the dealer simply gives them another card, which is dealt face-up. The next rounds of betting that take place will be started by the player that is showing the lowest card rank. The highest card rank was just for the first round of betting, the rest of the betting rounds occur with the lowest card. This happens until the last, seventh, card is dealt. This card is dealt face-down, and the final round of betting takes place. In the event that there are two or more players still participating in that hand, thy will have a showdown. This is where the players show their cards and a winner is determined.
Rules for Razz PokerThe rules are even easier to understand. Razz is an Ace to 5 type of game, which implies several things. Aces are considered a low card, which means the Ace is the lowest card possible in the deck. This also means that flushes and straights do not affect the player’s hand. That is why the lowest possible hand a player can get during Razz is an A-2-3-4-5 sequence. When there is a showdown, in order to figure out who the winner is, the poker players will start by comparing the highest ranked card in the hand with those of their opponents. The lowest ranked card among these will determine the winner. However, if a winner cannot be determined because two players have the same ranked card, the next card in the sequence will be compared. This will happen until a winner is determined; if it is tied, the pot will be split
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